Iowa Woman Sentenced to Prison on Misdemeanor Charge Related to Capitol Breach

Iowa Woman Sentenced to Prison on Misdemeanor  Charge Related to Capitol Breach

            WASHINGTON – An Iowa woman was sentenced in the District of Columbia on a misdemeanor count for her actions during the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol breach. Her actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the presidential election.

            Deborah Sandoval, 56, of Ankeny, Iowa, was sentenced to five months in prison for entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds on January 6, 2021. The defendant pled guilty on December 14, 2022, the morning that her case was set for bench trial.  In addition to the term of incarceration, U.S. District Judge Kollar-Kotelly ordered 12 months of supervised release, restitution in the amount of $500 to be paid to the Architect of the Capitol, and a $25 mandatory assessment.

            According to the agreed statement of offense for the plea, Sandoval was present at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021. Prior to traveling to Washington, D.C., Sandoval sent private messages detailing her plans to travel to Washington, D.C., and indicating that she knew it could get violent. After attending former President Trump’s rally at the Washington Monument, Sandoval entered the restricted area around the Capitol. By the time of her entry into the Capitol building, the Senate Wing Door had been forced open by rioters, and the corridor near the door had been overrun. Shortly after her entry into the Capitol building, Sandoval can be seen and heard on a video encouraging violence towards, Nancy Pelosi, the former Speaker of the House. Sandoval then remained in the Capitol building for a total of approximately 24 minutes before she left out of the Senate Wing Doors. In the days and weeks following January 6, 2021, Sandoval sent a number of messages on her phone and through social media describing her conduct on January 6, 2021. She also sent a message to a friend on Facebook inquiring about deleting pictures from the Capitol, including her previous trips to Washington, D.C.

            Sandoval was arrested on February 19, 2021, in Iowa.

            This case was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Southern District of Iowa.

            The case was investigated by the FBI’s Omaha Field Office and Washington Field Office. Valuable assistance was provided by the Metropolitan Police Department, and the U.S. Capitol Police.

            In the 27 months since Jan. 6, 2021, more than 1,000 individuals have been arrested in nearly all 50 states for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol, including more than 320 individuals charged with assaulting or impeding law enforcement. The investigation remains ongoing.

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